The Department of Africana Studies course offerings and course descriptions can be downloaded below for easy printing and browsing. The most up-to-date course information can always be found on Banner.
Spring 2019 Courses
Fall 2018 Courses
Spring 2018 Courses
Fall 2017 Courses
Spring 2017 Courses
Fall 2016 Courses
Spring 2016 Courses
Fall 2015 Courses
Spring 2015 Courses
Fall 2014 Courses
Spring 2014 Courses
Fall 2013 Courses
Spring 2013 Courses
Fall 2012 Courses
Spring 2012 Courses
Fall 2011 Courses
Spring 2011 Courses
Fall 2010 Courses
Recent Course Offerings and Descriptions
AFRI 0990: Black Lavender: Black Gay/Lesbian Plays/Dramatic Constructions in the American Theatre
An interdisciplinary approach to the study of plays that address the identities and issues of black gay men and lesbians and offers various perspectives from within and without the black gay and lesbian artistic communities. Focuses on analysis of unpublished titles. Also includes published works by Baraka, Bullins, Corbitt, Gibson, Holmes, West, and Pomo Afro Homos. Some evening screenings of videotapes.
AFRI 1020C: The Afro-Luso-Brazilian Triangle
Examines three historical components of the South Atlantic in terms of history, culture, and contemporary political and economic consequences. European colonialism in Africa and Brazil constitutes the baseline for this exploration, but the long and tardy nature of Portuguese colonialism in Africa in comparison with other European colonial powers, especially in its post-World War II manifestations, is our starting point.
AFRI 1050A: Advanced RPM Playwriting
Third level of RPM Playwriting; for students that have successfully completed RPM Playwriting and Intermediate RPM Playwriting (workshop). Instructor permission.
AFRI 1050D: Intermediate RPM Playwriting
Second level of RPM Playwriting; for students that want to continue developing their RPM plays or want to begin a new project (workshop).
AFRI 1050E: RPM Playwriting
Research-to-Performance Method (RPM) Playwriting guides students through the process of developing new plays that are informed by scholarly research (workshop).
AFRI 1050G: Narrating the Radical Self
How black women in the United States and elsewhere have written about their lives in autobiographies will be the focus of this course. We will discuss black women's use of autobiographical writing to document their own individual experiences in political movements as well as to provide key insights into how black people throughout the black diaspora have organized in recent history.
AFRI 1050Q: New Narratives in African American History: The Art and Craft of Poetic and Creative Non-Fiction
This seminar examines various examples of creative and poetic non-fiction, pertaining to race and the African American experience. While touching upon historic examples and precedent, emphasis will be on contemporary works, including the genres of poetry, drama, the narrative, the memoir, the travelogue and the personal essay. The course will explore what these works offer to the knowledge, popularization and perception of black history and to the shaping of cultural dialogue on blackness and race.
AFRI 1050R: The History of Afro-Futurism and Black Science Fiction
Any class called The History of Afro Futurism and Black Science Fiction automatically begs the question – "Well, what isn't futuristic about being Black in America?" The entire history of Black America can be seen as a fundamentally futurological and science fictional enterprise – a perpetual biding on hope and struggling for change endeavor that frequently employs far flung visions of tomorrow and other more oblique speculative stratagems in pursuit of outcomes barely foreseeable in the near-present.
AFRI 1050S: Comparative Slavery and Slave Revolts: Slave Rebellion in the Americans, 1725-1865
This course explores the history of slave revolts in North and South America and the Caribbean. It examines how acts of resistance transformed the lives of enslaved Africans and their relationships with white Americans, Europeans, and free and enslaved people of African descent. We will consider in what ways geography shaped the aims of a slave rebellion, how is a successful slave revolt determined, and what are the implications of slave unrest and its aftermath in local slave societies and in the Americas? This class will focus on insurrections in Jamaica, Saint Domingue (Haiti), the United States, Cuba, and Brazil.
AFRI 1060E: West African Writers and Political Kingdom
Do West African writers have a role to play in the changing political landscape of their countries? An examination of the ways and means through which a select group of West African writers have dealt with issues that relate to the role of the state in the management of individual and group relations, the politics of gender, civil and military relations, and the construction of new forms of civil society.
AFRI 1060V: Black Transnationalism
This seminar will explore the complex dynamics of black transnationalism during the long 20th century, focusing on the circulation of ideas and practices by Africans and African-descended communities and how they were contested and reconfigured as they flowed back and forth. Particular attention will be paid to some less-examined archives, interpretations and perspectives; ideas of black women activist-scholars; aesthetic practices, sonic regimes and religion; insights and experiences of those who lived diaspora. Seminar readings and discussions will introduce and "trouble" some key theoretical issues in the notion of black transnationalism, e.g. diaspora, Pan-Africanism, globality, translocalism, identity, articulation, and solidarity.
AFRI 1360: Africana Studies: Knowledge, Texts and Methodology
This course will explore the issues of Africana Studies as a discipline by engaging in a series of critical readings of the central texts, which laid the protocols of the discipline. The course will also raise issues of knowledge production and methodologies. This course is a senior capstone seminar. Open to all senior Africana Studies concentrators; others by instructor permission only.
AFRI 1971J: From Emancipation to Obama (HIST 1971X)
This course develops a deep reading knowledge of significant issues and themes that define African American experiences in the 20th century, experiences that begin with the years following Emancipation and culminates with the election of President Obama. Themes include citizenship, gender, labor, politics, and culture. The goal is to develop critical analysis and historiographical depth. Some background in twentieth century United States history is preferred but not required. Assignments include weekly reading responses, class participation and presentation, and two written papers.
AFRI 2002: Theories of Africana Thought: Literary and Expressive Cultures
A preoccupation of Africana Studies involves the central yet highly contested role of the notion of what constitutes black culture in the modern world. To what degree can we claim aesthetic and other distinctions between black cultures in the Diaspora and other modern western cultural practices and expressive forms? What role did enslavement, forced migration and segregation play in shaping Africana culture in the modern west? These cultural debates which played a central role in literary, musical, philosophical, aesthetic, historical and sociological analyses of the culture of people of African descent frame this course.
AFRI 2102: Interdisciplinary Methods and Africana Studies
This graduate seminar focuses on interdisciplinary methodology and Africana Studies. The seminar explores how students and scholars in Africana Studies use interdisciplinary methods developed in the social sciences and the humanities in novel and innovative ways. Students will critically examine key methodological issues in Africana Studies and how and in what ways these issues are similar to and differ from such disciplines as economics, history, sociology, and literature. Prerequisite: a prior undergraduate or graduate level methods in Humanities or Social Sciences.
AFRI 2013: Caribbean Literature: Novel, Criticism and Historiography
The purpose of this course is to engage in very close historical and literary readings of key Caribbean novels and poetry. The course will draw from the main linguistic areas of the region and will spend time reviewing some of the earlier and then contemporary texts of Caribbean literary criticism. The evaluation for the course will be a 30-page paper submitted at the end of the semester.